Demystifying Skin tone: 5 Easy Ways To Determine Your Skin Undertone

how to determine your skin tone
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Skin Undertone- What exactly is it?

With the range that exists in the skin tone, Choosing the correct foundation for your skin is a frustrating task! And with all the foundations lined up in the makeup aisle, I know it’s quite overwhelming to choose one. 

So, Do you know your skin undertone?

No, I am not talking about you being “fair” or “dark”. That would be your Skin Tone. 

Skin undertone is different from the skin tone and complexion. For starters, skin undertone doesn’t change due to various factors. But skin tone and complexion does. 

Understanding the real color of your skin basically depends upon discovering your skin tones and undertones. 

I am sure you’ve seen someone wearing a lighter shade foundation than their skin tone. 

You know the look- their face is all white, ashy gray and bright while their neck is dark. 

Or maybe chances are you have faced this atrocity yourself!

Honestly, I was confused about my skin tone for years and have faced the atrocity myself. Trust me, you’re not alone in this. 

Firstly, to get to know the perfect match for your skin, it’s essential to know why it is important to know your skin tone. 

So, Why is it important to know your skin tone ? 

When it comes to choosing the most flattering shade for your makeup products, skin undertone plays an essential role. 

Knowing your skin tone is the key to finding the correct shade of foundation for your skin and creating that flawless makeup look. right makeup for skin tone

Not just that, knowing your skin tone helps in figuring out what color shade matches you the most and will make you look amazing. 

The truth is, many women, just like you, do not know much about skin tone and undertones and their importance in determining the right color of clothes, makeup or even for that matter the hair color! 

The thumb rule here is to know what your skin tone is, and match the shades that compliment your skin tone. 

After all, wearing the right shades will save your time, and energy while making you glow and look vibrant and will also accentuate your best features. 

Sometimes determining your skin tone is quite obvious and sometimes it’s tricky. I totally get it. But figuring out your skin tone can be much easier than you think.

To make it easier for you, here’s an easy guide on how to find your skin tone and undertone and perfecting that foundation match. 

What is skin tone ? 

Skin tone basically refers to the surface color of your skin. Depends on the amount of “melanin” your body produces. 

It can be anywhere between “very light” to “very dark”

For instance, Caucasians are basically reflective of light skin color while Indians belong to a medium skin tone. 



Depending on this, skin is categorized into various categories like- 

  • Fair
  • Light 
  • Medium 
  • Tan 
  • Deep 

Remember, the surface color of an individual can change in any given point of life depending on seasons, skin conditions or even exposure to the sun and various other factors. 

The skin on the face changes even more often than you think! 

Refer to the skin tone chart below to figure out what skin tone you closely resemble to.


What is Skin Undertone ? 

When shopping for a foundation you might have heard the terms like “warm”, “cool” and “neutral” to describe a particular shade. This is nothing but what is

skin undertone

 described as a skin undertone. 

A skin undertone, as the name suggests, is a subtle muted hue that reflects from underneath your skin surface.

Here’s what these undertones basically means- 

Warm- a shade of yellow, peachy, golden hue that reflects on your skin 

Cool- skin has a hint of blue, pinkish purple complex 

Neutral-  reflects an olive shade or the natural color of the skin is evident with a balanced mix of the shades above 


What is Skin Complexion? 

It’s worth noting that skin tone and skin complexion are not the same. skin complexion-freckles

Skin tone refers to the basic color of your skin while skin complexion includes your overall appearance. 

It includes the unfortunate dark circles you have, the freckles that develops overtime or the rosy red cheeks you get in winters. The texture of your skin, such as oily or dry also is referred to as skin complexion. 

As you age, and with other factors, skin complexion also tends to change over time. And this isn’t the determining factor when it comes to selecting the right foundation shade. Skin complexion always comes in secondary.

Now, before going crazy in the makeup aisle to find the perfect match of any product, check out these handful tips that will help you nail that perfect foundation match for your skin tone. 

How to Determine Your Skin Undertone? 

How to determine whether you are “Cool”, “Warm” or “Neutral” undertone?

There are several ways in which you can determine your skin tone. 

You can easily do any of these tests at home to know your skin undertone. 

Let’s make it easy for you. 


1. Test with all White

Wear a pure while towel or bathrobe and stand in front of a well lit mirror. Try to get the best natural light if possible, and no direct sunlight. mirror, all white test for skin undertone

Basically, surround yourself with all white. 

Note: It’s best to do this test in natural light and a freshly washed face (no makeup on) 

Pull back your hair and be bare till your shoulders. 

Now, how does your skin look? 

Does it look dull or pinkish Blue?  If yes, you belong to the cool undertone. 

Slight yellowish? You have a warm undertone. 

Or is it a green, Olive shade? If so, you probably lean towards a neutral undertone. 


2. Consider how your skin reacts to the sun-

This one might not be the most accurate one, but may give you an idea.Fitzpatrick scale for Skin tone

 Ask yourself these following questions to help you determine your skin tone-

  • Does your skin burn easily? 
  • Do you sunburn ? 
  • Do you tan easily? 

The  given Fitzpatrick chart will help you figure out the skin undertone that you belong to.


3. Look at the color of your Veins 

This is one of the easiest ways to determine your skin tone, though it can take a while to figure out. skin tone vein test

Look at the underside of your wrist, and closely examine your veins.

  • If your veins appear blue or purple- you have a cool undertone 
  • If they are greenish olive – you belong to warm undertone 
  • Or if they are a mix of both- your dominant undertone is neutral 

4. Try on some jewelry

Take a piece of silver and gold jewelry and place it next to your face. jewelry test

Determine which looks better, despite your personal choice (don’t be biased here!) 

Now, see which one makes you healthier and brighter. 

  • If silver gives a lift to your face, you have a cool undertone 
  • Gold looking better? You have a warm undertone. 
  • And if it’s the both that suits, neutral undertone is what you have. 


5. Consider this Color Test 

Still confused ? color test

This is a fun test, but a bit of a task for you. 

Take out all your favorite clothes from the closet. Stand in front of a well lit mirror. 

Hold different colors next to your skin and see how the colors make you look. 

  • If colors like blue, white, purple, black compliments you, you have a cool undertone. 
  • You have a warm undertone, if peach, yellow, orange makes your complexion pop up. 
  • Well, if you are lucky enough that you look good in every shade, you belong to a neutral undertone. 


Still having this question “what skin tone am I?”

This easy skin tone quiz will help you with that and will also guide you with what foundation and makeup looks will look best on you and make your complexion pop. 


Type of Skin Undertones- 

So, Did you make it?

Did you determine what skin undertone you belong to?

Still skeptical?

Below I have mentioned a Cheat Sheet, for you to clear out the doubt.


types of skin undertone


Now that you know everything about your skin undertone, read about how to find your beauty style, that is specific just for you. 


5 thoughts on “Demystifying Skin tone: 5 Easy Ways To Determine Your Skin Undertone”

  1. Hey I just realized I sent you a “ask me a questions! Opps but I wanted to say i AM OBBSSSED with skincare but rarely pay attention to underskin tone. Also how cool is it some clothes can make you glow when you match with your undertones! Very informative post… Pinning

  2. This is the best and most informative article I have ever read about skin undertones. I really appreciate how you took the time to explain everything and include multiple examples. As someone who doesn’t know anything about makeup I always got confused when people asked me what my undertones are. I now know I have a cool undertone! Thanks!

  3. Pingback: Nail The No Makeup Makeup Look With These 10 Effortless Steps -

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